Resident Evil 5 is Rubbish

Go controversial title, go! You’ll never overstay your welcome and add lacklustre additions to your fine franchise, yet still neglect to bring your core attractions up to date!

Resident Evil 5 outsold No Line on the Horizon (U2’s new crapfest album). Not only did it outsell it over the release weekend, but in two days it sold more than U2’s effort since release. Now, since an album costs less than a tenner, and Resi is the best part of £40 I can see how the figures pan out, but I still can’t figure why it’s selling so well.

Resi has a fine pedigree. For me it was the first scary game I played. Silent Hill came along and knocked the atmospheric survival horror ball out of the park, but Resi was there first. Hammy storyline, awful-yet-inspired dialogue, cack-handed controls and zombie dogs enamoured any who played it. The first sequel was more of the same but sans mansion. Then we had more of the same but with a big persistent bad guy. Then there were some remakes, some light gun games, a prequel and some terrible movies.

The Resident Evil franchise was gradually eating itself. Subsequent games added little in terms of gameplay whilst maintaining the hammy story and sparseness of ammo. Then Capcom blew us all away with Resident Evil 4. Abandoned villages, chainsaws wielding unkillable maniacs, over-the-shoulder viewpoints and a strange man who followed you around just in case you fancied buying some guns. Just about every man and his zombie dog loved it.

Now we have Resident Evil 5. It’s basically Resi 4 in Africa but without the atmosphere and with more of a focus on multiplayer. When you die in Resi 5 you go to a screen here you can buy equipment, you also manage the equipment of your AI partner who both supports and confounds your efforts. Many times Sheva has sprayed green healy herb into my face, whereas she has also managed to get torn apart by a girl with a tentacle for a head and become lacerated by a mounted machine gun.

I guess Resi 5 doesn’t feel like a Resi game to me. Admittedly I’ve not finished it but I had no urge to after being killed by the same crocodile six or seven times. The game is not tense like it’s brethren, it’s more run and gun. Unfortunately the game feels so static. The position of the camera and your inability to move whilst aiming might have added to the dramatic tension if there was any, but it’s sadly missing. Resi 4 somehow maintained a feel of hopelessness, of being in a hostile lien land. Resi 5 fells more like you’re on holiday ad I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because any attempt to get into the feel of the game is destroyed by the little concessions made to the co-op.

I just didn’t like Resi 5. There are better action games and better horror games. If this game didn’t bear the Resident Evil name would it have sold? I don’t think so. There have been big advances in video games since the seminal Resi 4, but Capcom seems to have ignored them. We were hoping for the same kind of revolution 4 provided, instead this feels more like a mission pack rather than a valid new addition to the core games.

Rant ends!

World of Subways

As you may be aware, the chums here at Stuporcollider love us some survival horror and are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Resident Evil 5 with great antici…
pation. To tide us through until Friday (WHEEE!) here’s a trailer for World of Subways Vol.2:

Well, that’s going on my to-buy list!
Also, while I was watching the trailer for Resi 5 I noticed that they’re remaking Last House on the Left. STOP IT!

Stuporcollider meets JoCo and Paul & Storm

This Friday my compatriots and I shuffled down to Nottingham to visit Game City 3 for several varied yet interesting reasons.
Firstly I would like to announce that Ado and I are now official World Record holders! (Well, maybe not but we were part of the 1227 zombies in Nottingham city centre). Pictured are the zombies who were not constrained by crippling bouts of self awareness and actually got together to do the Thriller dance.

Later on, after receiving several strange looks from our fellow ale enthusiasts at The Olde Trip, still bedecked as the undead we marched on the Britannia Hotel, an Overlook-esq nightmare of seventies decor. Despite my well documented love of city center hoteliers we had the ulterior motive of attending Game City’s hallow’een party, featuring the wonderful Jonathan Coulton and the hilarious Paul & Storm.

Walking into the event, I was a little apprehensive. Tables and chairs do not normally a concert make. However after six or so pints of Caste Rock brewery’s guest ale, Fine Ale Fantasy, things began to seem much rosier. After meeting Mr. Coulton and Mr. Paul guiding their merch proles in the fine art of stealing all my money we sojourned to the main room to see the acts.

I don’t think I can impress upon you how truly fabulous I thought this gig was. Paul & Storm were fantastic, and we apparently dance like we’re at a Dropkick Murphy’s gig. Jonathan Coulton apparently was suffering from cold. I didn’t notice but I was down the best part of 10 pints by this point, and you’ll be pleased to know that your fearless editor Ado managed to hold up Mr. Storm from appearing in one of his songs by chatting US politics. I can only assume they were discussing Mrs. Palin’s lovely wardrobe (lie.)

Afterwards I managed to get to say hi to the artists, and I keep the British end up by being really quite drunk, huge, short haired, hoody wearing zombie lumbering around making comments that I just can’t remember. Ado has a picture of me actually touching Mr. Coulton and not slobbering like a fool but he is keeping it ransom until I can pay him the fee of 150 vintage 80’s metal tour t-shirts.

WIN!

Dead Space Review

Dead Space Artwork
It’s dark, my leg brushes something and sends it clattering across the floor. Instinctively I bristle, what else could have been alerted by my clumsiness? A second later I feel it’s safe to breathe out, and as I do an inhuman moan issues from around the next corner. Frozen in place all I can do is watch as the sleek, monstrous form comes into view. Turning towards me with eyes glowing in the darkness, it says ‘Meow?’

Dead Space is EA’s latest game in which you’re a regular joe trapped on a huge industrial capital ship in space as biomechanical monsters try to eat your face. Sounds familiar? It should; it’s the setup for just about any space monster movie ever but don’t be quick to dismiss it for it’s mildly cliched setting, Dead Space captures the atmosphere of such movies with aplomb dropping subtle hints to its inspiration all the time.

As I hinted at in my slightly misleading intro, Dead Space keeps you on your toes, unlike an overzealous feline jonesing for dinner number 3. I can’t say it’s strictly scary but it is tense. The designers have gone to great lengths to keep you guessing from where the next hideous, screaming monster is going to pop up from, and it’s here that the slightly annoying camera comes into it’s own leaving you frantically waving the mouse around to get a bead on a destructible chunk of necrotised flesh. Many are stating that the game isn’t survival horror but I beg to differ, the over-the-shoulder, clunky nature of the camera, light backtracking, ammo management, space-zombies and atmosphere all put it firmly into survival territory in my book. What other game have you stopped yourself from saving because you thought you heard some creature nearby as you were just accessing the save screen?

The only reason I can see that some are loathe to avoid the survival horror moniker is the fact that you’re actually pretty lethal to the beasties inhabiting the ship. Equipped from the start with a tool that lets you cut limbs from your assailants, a single bad guy proves little challenge provided you can catch him at range; but don’t expect this to be the norm. Later on you’ll be beset by bads from all corners and it’s here the game’s other main tool takes over; the stasis tool allows you to slow down time for a target, at the expense of draining it’s own ammo reserve. Together with inspired weapons, such as a remote control buzzsaw, you feel quite well tooled up to take on the Ishimura’s crew but don’t think that you’re going to be running around guns blazing. Without careful management you may end up swinging or throwing blunt objects at the monsters, a less than ideal situation.

I may be a little biased here, I got my copy of Far Cry 2 on Thursday but felt a little disappointed by it, so I decided to swallow the expense and pick up the game on Friday night after work. By midday on Sunday I was watching the end credits. Weighing in at about 12 hours the pace is good, and I never felt like any part was over long nor were there any obvious attempts to artificially lengthen the gameplay.The inventory management and weapon and character customisation, while fairly cosmetic, add to the game a surprising amount, forcing you to make trade offs in your gear. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not Diablo but a nice addition. Story-wise, it’s not Poe. The plot and ineviatble twists are perfectly acceptable and feel built into the game, rather than a last minute addition but never threaten the realms of genious.

Dead Space feels like a slightly brawnier version of Bioshock mixed with Paul W.S. Anderson’s only good movie, Event Horizon, with queues taken from Aliens and Resident Evil 4. Cinematic, tense and brutal it’s superb fun; highly recommended.

Stuporcollider vs. The Russian Mafia

IT’S ALIVE!

Hi folks, just got back from seeing Goldfrapp in Leicester and found that our little weekend problem has been sorted! Apparently the server our box is hosted on was the victim of a DDoS attack lasting most of the weekend, hence the reason why the site has been redirecting to an error page. We’re all good now so enjoy, and remember to keep your Windows patched and you malware checkers up to date! Zombies are only cool in horror films.

P.S. Goldfrapp were awesome, support guy not so much. Watch the quite brilliant video to A&E with gusto: